BJP MP Kirit Somaiya filed a PIL in the Bombay High Court on Friday challenging the state cabinet resolution of January this year which gave a waiver of a fine of Rs 3.33 crore along with interest on penalty levied on illegal floors of a housing project called Chhabhaiya Vihang Garden.
The residential project was built by Shiv Sena’s Thane MLA Pratap Sarnaik’s Vihang group. Sarnaik is presently facing an Enforcement Directorate probe in a money laundering case.
Somaiya has claimed that the resolution was passed by the cabinet to waive off the Rs 18 crore penalty. He also said that the state and the Thane Municipal Corporation’s decision to protect Sarnaik from criminal proceedings under the Maharashtra Regional and Town Planning (MRTP) Act for the construction of the building is against the law.
The Thane Municipal Corporation had imposed a fine on Sarnaik. The plea alleges that of the 2,707 square metre construction, the developer has built 2,089 sq metres without any permission and has constructed 13 floors. It was then sought to be regularised in 2013 and 2014.
The Thane Municipal Corporation had then fined him Rs 3.33 crore and said if it was not paid in six months, he would be charged an additional penalty at a rate of 18 per cent. The state government, however, decided to waive off the fine later.